Rough edit from 2nd research period, May 2016
Video from 1st research period, March 2016
A World Above (2016-2017)
A new-circus performance establishing a new reality in the air
A World Above is the radical journey of a group of four Nordic performers building a community above the ground. A social experiment in the air - requiring new ways of moving, with new modes of being and surviving. Proving the human capacity to create and triumph in extreme environments.
A World Above is an areal performance based on a series of continuous tasks and actions done individually and as a group on multiple levels. These ongoing tasks range from dangerous labor to daily tasks of cleaning, cooking and socializing in mid-air. Gradually, a communal world will be created - a network of ropes, found objects, car parts, furniture, designer materials and live animals. The audience will then be invited to come on stage and observe the new world from below, with only a few people pulled up to join the new world…
A world above is not focused on tricks and ‘acts’ common in contemporary circus. The concrete task of building a physical and social life above the ground will challenge the artists to find new meaningful ways of performing in this areal space. Virtuosity in this performance will be the art of combining superior circus abilities with familiar daily actions high above the ground, giving new significance to the skills of the circus artists.
The move into the air will transport the audience’s experience into a realm of suspended reality, a place of both new possibilities and harsh vulnerability.
The migration into the air will evoke diverse references from our social and global fabric - from subcultures and Christiania like utopia to intense conditions of migration and post-climate-apocalypse.
A World Above will follow a post-dramatic perspective, emphasizing the ‘here and now’ interactions of material, performer and audience, rather than narratives and characters. This will be achieved through scoring practices, which are concretely defined actions and tasks, in contrast to the formal practices of choreography and directing.
A World Above will use intensive and complex scores to create genuine social and physical interaction in real time on stage – giving the performance a sense of an actual community becoming!
Major inspiration will be derived from performance based actions and scores from the 60’s to the present. Such as Anna Halprin’ Parades & Changes, Assemblage art practices of Edward & Nancy Kienholz, Keith Hennessey performance-art-circus, Guillermo Gómez-Peña’s hyper-symbolic props and costumes, La Ribot rawness, Alain Buffard fashion/performance, Forced Entertainment, Alastair MacLennan, and more
A World Above is a 90 minutes performance that takes place in industrial halls or big black-box theaters with minimum of 7-meter free height. There will be 6 points of hanging with a one-ton minimum for each. The audience will be placed around or on one side, depending on the situation and conditions.
The performance will begin with a minimalist set of 6 hanging ropes and will slowly develop with the performers occupying the areal space with different tasks using each other and a variety of ‘found’ objects, big and small, and resulting in an intricate areal world of their own. The audience will be invited to come closer, make contact and a few will be invited to join the world above…
Images from the world above
A web of ropes spreading across space with islands of suspended objects - an evolving assemblage of familiar and unfamiliar pieces of the world.
One performer is laboring to raise one more giant piece of the world using a complex human counter balance with another performer crawling in the world above.
Another performer composing music from suspended objects as she showers in mid air…while another performer is swinging, trapped half way between the worlds above and below in a mesh of old cloths and microphone cords, and slowly transforming.
A performer traveling upside down on the bottom of the world as she speaks texts from recorded headset describing sensual dreams of a flooded world…while at another point a few performers atop a suspended roof of a car are re-enacting a favorite film they remember from the world below…
To achieve these goals we have put together a competent team.
Boaz Barkan’s experience comes from various performance practices and his close work with Anne Halprin and the scoring process. Over the past 10 years he has taught many young circus artists in AFUK and at the professional circus education AMoC, as well as directed several circus graduation shows. Boaz has a passion to break through the many norms of ‘new-circus’.
Josephine Wulff Randrup’s experience as performer and co-leader of Royal Bones brings high expertise in areal skills and a deep commitment to move the genre forwards into new domains.
Line Frank have visionary approaches to integrated fashion, set, costume and objects to achieve uncompromising performances.
Maja Romm’s brings her long experience with creating sound and music for circus and performance (Royal Bones)
We have invited four superb emerging circus artists from Scandinavia, who are hungry for the opportunity to use their outstanding skills in new and radical ways. Mikkle Hobitz Flitenborg from the circus group Sisters, Karoline Aamås from Tanter, Simon Wiburn from Svalbard Company and Manda Rydman.
•AFUK – Rehearsal space, technical support and expertise (see letter attached.)
•KULTURVÆRFTET – Partnership in realizing the project (see letter attached.)
•REPUBLIQUE – in a positive dialog as a potential partner (Spillested)
•SUBTOPIA - in positive communication regarding residency in Sweden
Occupy the air!